TORONTO, ONTARIO--(Marketwire - March 8, 2011) - Without a new public investment in the 2011 Provincial budget, Ontarians can expect to see child care fees increase from 15 to 30 per cent or cause some programs to close. The Ontario Coalition for Better Child Care and the Ontario Federation of Labour are launching a provincial tour to call on the Ontario Government to make affordable child care a public priority.

In Ontario, only 20 per cent of children have access to a licensed child care space. Without subsidies like those in Manitoba and Québec, that reduce fees to affordable levels, many Ontario parents are paying between $40 and $60 a day for each child. At this rate, child care fees can run between $10,000 and $15,000 a year and are often the second highest expense for young families.

The Provincial tour will include community forums in Belleville, Peterborough, Thunder Bay, Windsor, Kitchener, Sudbury and Ottawa to sound the alarm that a new financial crisis threatens Ontario's early learning and child care programs.

The Hamilton community forum will highlight the local importance of child care and the specific challenges facing parents in region.

WHO:   Andrea Calver, Coordinator, Ontario Coalition for Better Child Care
    Marie Kelly, Secretary Treasurer, Ontario Federation of Labour
    Janis Webster, Executive Director, Umbrella Family and Child Centres of Hamilton
    Nichole Bell, Parent
WHAT:   Community Forum – Will Child Care Survive
WHERE:   Ray Lewis Elementary School, 27 Jessica St. Hamilton L8W 4A1
WHEN:   Wednesday March 9, 2011 from 6:30 p.m. to 9:00 p.m.

Contact Information: Ontario Coalition for Better Child Care
Andrea Calver
416-538-0628 x 4 or cell: 416-434-8031
Ontario Federation of Labour
Joel Duff
416-443-7665 or cell: 416-707-0349